June 2023

Is Canada Ready to Fully Embrace Electric Vehicles?

11:45am-1:30pm | One King West Hotel - 1 King St West, Toronto

Survey after survey shows Canadians' enthusiasm for electric vehicles (EVs), but what is the actual level of interest when EVs remain much more expensive than ICE vehicles? How deep is that level of enthusiasm from Canadians given that for the last five years more than 50% of Canadians have indicated on surveys, that their next vehicle will be electric? Are we past the early adopter stage or past the “tipping point” for EV adoption? Furthermore, is the supply chain and infrastructure model ready? Are Canadian municipalities ready with planning and zoning changes to accommodate bulk charging of EVs? Are cities investing in infrastructure to accommodate EVs without garages? Is the power grid ready? Join our panel of industry leaders as they dive into these questions and more!

- Lunch will be served -

Ticket Pricing:

Individual seat: $135 + HST

Table (Seats 10): $1135 + HST


- For information about accessibility, please email victoria@economicclub.ca
- Dietary restriction notes and meal requests must be submitted victoria@economicclub.ca.
- Refunds/credits: We require three business days notice in advance of the event date for ticket cancellations

*The views expressed on the Economic Club platform are not that of the Economic Club or its affiliates but of the speakers alone and the organizations they represent*

Is Canada Ready to Fully Embrace Electric Vehicles?

Irfaan Hasham, P.Eng, CEM, CMVP

Director, Energy & Environment
Global Automakers of Canada

 Irfaan Hasham, P.Eng, CEM, CMVP

As the founding Principal at Simply Sustainable Energy Solutions, Irfaan developed a great deal of experience in both the consulting and utility worlds. He is a Professional Engineer (P.Eng) and holds a bachelors of Engineering in Electrical Engineering from Ryerson University. With over 10 years of experience working with or for government entities, he has a solid understanding of the current market and political landscape with respect to energy, climate change and asset management. Irfaan has been involved in delivering complex multi-million-dollar conservation/asset management plans and projects on time and within budget for several utilities and clients across the province. With a specialization spanning across several sectors, Irfaan has worked with the largest real estate investment firms and property managers across Toronto to reduce energy consumption.

Andreas Tetzloff

President and CEO
Mercedes-Benz Canada

Andreas Tetzloff

As President and CEO of Mercedes-Benz Canada, Andreas Tetzloff is responsible for Mercedes-Benz passenger cars, Mercedes-AMG and Mercedes-Benz vans. He leads Mercedes-Benz Canada's 250 employees and a nationwide network of 59 authorized dealerships.

Tetzloff joined Mercedes-Benz AG in 1992. He held several positions in own retail, including Commercial Director responsible for HR and Finance in Frankfurt (among other positions), before then becoming sales director in Berlin in 2008. After serving as Managing Director of Porsche in Hamburg from 2011-2014, Tetzloff gained deep entrepreneurial experience as Managing Director of one of the largest dealer groups in Germany from 2015-2019, before returning to Mercedes-Benz Own Retail as Sales Director, Rhine-Main (the largest sales territory in Germany). In this role Tetzloff was also responsible for sales of new passenger cars own retail Germany and business development. In his last appointment, Tetzloff led Mercedes-Benz Russia.

Flavio Volpe

Automotive Parts Manufacturers’ Association

Flavio Volpe

Flavio Volpe is an internationally recognized champion of Canada's automotive industry. He proudly leads the Automotive Parts Manufacturers’ Association (APMA) - Canada's national association representing original equipment suppliers to the worldwide automotive industry Working closely with officials in Ottawa, Washington and Mexico City during the 2017-19 NAFTA renegotiations, he led the effort to secure an unexpected and unprecedented increase in Regional Value Content for Canadian automotive suppliers in the new USMCA.

When the global COVID19 pandemic created a dangerous medical equipment shortage in Canada in early 2020, he launched one of the biggest peace-time mobilizations of the country’s industrial capacity ever. Dubbed a ‘manufacturing hero’ by the Toronto Star for his leadership, this effort resulted in the largest build-orders of ventilators, face shields, surgical masks and gowns in Canada’s history.

A passionate technology leader, his response to the Prime Minister’s call to action for a net-zero emission economy by 2050 was to launch an all-Canadian, zero-emissions, lightweight, concept vehicle to debut in 2022. Described by the Globe and Mail as ‘an audacious play to build an all Canadian electric car’, APMA’s Project Arrow was revealed at CES2023 in Las Vegas to international coverage and will serve as a premier showcase of Canada’s automotive technology cluster.

Flavio speaks regularly on behalf of industry interests and is a sought-after voice by leading global publications including The Economist, New York Times, Bloomberg, Wall Street Journal, CNN, BBC, CNBC, Globe and Mail and Washington Post. He was recognized as a top Industry Leader in the 2017, 2018, 2019 and 2020 editions of Automotive News Canada’s All-Stars.

Flavio holds a Master’s in Business Administration from the Schulich School of Business at York University and a Bachelor’s degree in International Relations from the University of Toronto.

Francis Bradley

President and Chief Executive Officer
Electricity Canada

Francis Bradley

Francis Bradley is the President and Chief Executive Officer of Electricity Canada. Founded in 1891, Electricity Canada (formerly the Canadian Electricity Association) is the national voice for sustainable electricity for its members and the customers they serve as the country works towards a Net Zero by 2050 future.

Electricity Canada members include integrated electric utilities, independent power producers, transmission and distribution companies, power marketers, manufacturers and suppliers of materials, technology, and services. The Association supports, through its advocacy efforts, the regional, national, and international success of its members.

Francis is the co-chair of the National Cross-Sector Forum, overseeing Canada’s Action Plan for Critical Infrastructure. He also sits on the Steering Committee for the Electricity Sub-Sector Coordinating Council (ESCC), the Board for the Energy Council of Canada (ECC), the Positive Energy Advisory Council, and is a founding Board member of the Canadian Transportation Alliance. At the North American Electric Reliability Corporation’s (NERC) Member Representatives Committee and Board of Trustees’ meetings, Francis represents Electricity Canada and advocates strongly for its members in their activities related to the Electric Reliability Organization Enterprise, and its role in ensuring the reliability and security of the North American bulk power system.

Prior to being named CEO in June 2019, Francis managed Electricity Canada’s day-to-day activities as Chief Operating Officer since 2014. During that time, he also was a member of the National Advisory Committee of Canada’s Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction and was a co-chair with the Standards Council of Canada of the Smart Grid Standards Advisory Committee.

In 2019, Francis created and continues to host “The Flux Capacitor” podcast series featuring discussions about the future of electricity with CEOs, regulators, political figures, and leaders from civil society. The Flux Capacity is currently airing episode 064.

Natasha Hope Morano

Event Chair
Economic Club of Canada

Natasha Hope Morano

Natasha Hope Morano, M.A. is the President of NHM Connect, an Ottawa based consultancy company specializing in corporate and government relations.

A demonstrated history of working in the non-profit sector has equipped Ms. Morano with providing her client base with high level strategic advice.

Ms. Morano has grown her reputation by building authentic and respected
relationships and connections with a diverse ecosystem of partners. Stewarding
and cultivating relationships is a central pillar of her everyday operation and how she assists her clients in achieving their mandates.

As former Vice President of the Economic Club of Canada, the National Podium of Record in Canada and having opened and managed the first satellite chapter of the Club in Ottawa, she has had the privilege of hosting some of the world’s most notable influencers and thought leaders. Miss Morano is respected by the business, academic, political, and diplomatic circles in Ottawa. This is something she is extremely proud of achieving and why she has been so successful in supporting her clients with their business needs.

Natasha has a passion for supporting causes that advance small businesses, children’s rights, cancer research and social innovation. Her philanthropy has been recognized by both publishing a chapter in Making it in High Heels 4: Women of Philanthropy and Charity and being a Businesswoman of the Year Awards (BYAs) Finalist in Ottawa and most recently being named a 40 Under 40 recipient for 2023 by the Ottawa Business Journal and Ottawa board of Trade.

Having completed in master’s degree in Political Science Natasha also has an interest in International Affairs and in 2019 she was selected by the Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs to attend the first Canadian Women Leaders’ Mission to Israel. She continues to have an interest in the MENA region.

Natasha resides in Ottawa and enjoys spending time outside with her dog. Once a nationally ranked equestrian, she continues to keep one foot in the stirrup, while the other is firmly planted in growing her business and promoting causes that she feels deeply connected to.

Pierre Boutin

President and Chief Executive Officer
Volkswagen Group Canada Inc

Pierre Boutin

Pierre Boutin is President and Chief Executive Officer of Volkswagen Group Canada Inc., comprising the businesses of Volkswagen Canada, Audi Canada Inc. and the distribution of Automobili Lamborghini Canada. He is responsible for overseeing an organization of roughly 400 employees supporting 200 dealerships. He is a member of the Regional Board of Management of Volkswagen Group of North America, Board of Directors of Volkswagen Credit Canada Inc., and of Electrify Canada.
Pierre is a Canadian citizen who is fluent in both English and French. He holds a Bachelor of Commerce degree with a specialization in Marketing from Université Laval. He has extensive international experience as Head of Volkswagen France leading the organization to its best performance in the past decade, and prior to that as Head of Volkswagen Russia where he led the brand through its most severe crisis securing viability and future investments. Most recently, he has achieved an important turnaround of the Canadian operations and has contributed to secure strategic investments in battery manufacturing to support the growth of the Volkswagen Group business in North America.

Prior to joining Volkswagen, Pierre had Domestic and International leadership roles with Ford and Nissan including Managing Director of Central & Eastern Europe and of Nissan West Europe SAS.

Pierre is married and has two children.

Raed Kadri

Head of the Ontario Vehicle Innovation Network (OVIN)

Raed Kadri

Network (OVIN), an initiative by the Government of Ontario to ensure Ontario’s leadership in the future of the automotive and mobility sector.

At the helm of OVIN, Raed drives Ontario’s presence on the global stage, leading programming that supports research and development (R&D) funding, talent development, technology acceleration, business and technical supports through testing and demonstration sites.

In addition to that, Raed leads province-wide coordination of activities and resources, public education, research, analysis, and thought leadership. Bringing together stakeholder groups and raising awareness around the opportunities for Ontario and for its partners, Raed is cementing Ontario’s leadership in the future of the automotive and mobility sector globally.